Sexual Harassment among Young Tourists Visiting Mediterranean Resorts
- 651 Downloads
Despite the known increase in substance use and risky sexual behaviors among young people during holiday periods, issues of sexual harassment (SH) and having sex against one’s will (SAW) have not received adequate attention. We implemented a cross-sectional airport-based study to identify experience of SH and SAW in 6,502 British and German holidaymakers aged 16–35 years visiting tourist resorts in Southern Europe (Crete, Cyprus, Italy, Portugal, and Spain) in summer 2009. Across all participants, 8.6 % reported SH during their holiday and 1.5 % reported SAW. Women reported higher levels of SH than heterosexual males. However, gay and bisexual males reported SH levels similar to females and the highest levels of SAW. Of 19 predictor variables tested, ten were independently associated with SH. SH was increased in those who were visitors to Mallorca or Crete, British, younger, female, gay or bisexual, frequently drunk on holiday, cocaine users, and attracted to bars where people get drunk, or where there are opportunities for sex. Among 13 predictor variables tested for SAW, four were significant. SAW reduced in those visiting Cyprus, and was strongly associated with being a gay or bisexual male, using cannabis on holiday and being attracted to bars where there were opportunities for sex. Holiday resorts represent a key location for SH and SAW, especially for holidaymakers who get drunk and use drugs. Preventive programs can raise awareness of the risks of unwanted sexual encounters on holiday and work with the tourist industry and tourist authorities to develop environments where sexual aggression is not tolerated.
KeywordsSexual harassment Nightlife Tourism Holidays Alcohol use Drug use
The project has been funded by the European Commission, Directorate B: Criminal Justice, Unit B3: Criminal Justice Support Programme and Daphne, Project TRAVELS Nº JLS/DAP/2007-1/135 30-CE-0227672/00-87.
- Abbey, A., Zawacki, T., Buck, P. O., Clinton, A., & McAuslan, P. (2001). Alcohol and sexual assault. Alcohol Health and Research World, 25, 43–51.Google Scholar
- Bacharach, S. B., Bamberger, P. A., & McKinney, V. M. (2007). Harassing under the influence: The prevalence of male heavy drinking, the embeddedness of permissive workplace drinking norms, and the gender harassment of female coworkers. Journal of Occupational Health Psychology, 12, 232–250.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Bellis, M. A., Hughes, K., & Hughes, S. (2006). Intimate partner violence and alcohol. Geneva, Switzerland: World Health Organization.Google Scholar
- Cairns, K. V. (1994). Unwanted sexual attention in university residences. Journal of College and University Student Housing, 24, 30–36.Google Scholar
- Clark, P., Cook, P. A., Syed, Q., Ashton, J. R., & Bellis, M. A. (2001). Re-emerging syphilis in the North West: Lessons from the Manchester outbreak. Liverpool: Liverpool John Moores University.Google Scholar
- Cohen, E. (2003). Transnational marriage in Thailand: The dynamics of extreme heterogamy. In G. Bauer & B. McKerche (Eds.), Sex and tourism: Journeys of romance, love and lust (pp. 57–84). New York: Howard Hospitality Press.Google Scholar
- de Oliveira Santos, A., & Paiva, V. (2007). Vulnerability to HIV: Tourism and the use of alcohol and other drugs. Revista Saúde Pública, 41(Supl. 2), 80–86.Google Scholar
- Equal Rights Advocates. (2010). What is sexual harassment? Sexual harassment at school: Know your rights. Available at: www.equalrights.org/publications/kyr/shschool.asp.
- Finney, A. (2003). Alcohol and intimate partner violence: Key findings from the research. Home Office Findings No. 216. London: Home Office.Google Scholar
- Finney, A. (2004). Alcohol and sexual violence: Key findings from the research. Home Office Findings No. 215. London: Home Office.Google Scholar
- Graburn, N. H. H. (1983). The anthropology of tourism. Annals of Tourism Research, 10, 9–33.Google Scholar
- Hibell, B., Guttormsson, U., Ahlström, S., Balakireva, O., Bjarnason, T., Kokkevi, A., et al. (2009). The 2007 ESPAD report on substance use among students in 35 European countries. Stockholm: The Swedish Council for Information on Alcohol and Other Drugs (CAN).Google Scholar
- Kelly, L., Lovett, J., & Regan, L. (2005). A gap or a chasm? Attrition in reported rape cases. Home Office research study 293. London: Home Office.Google Scholar
- Lomba, L., Apóstolo, J., & Mendes, F. (2009). Drugs and alcohol consumption and sexual behaviors in night recreational settings in Portugal. Adicciones, 31, 309–326.Google Scholar
- Martin, S. E. (1992). The epidemiology of alcohol related interpersonal violence. Alcohol Health and Research World, 16, 231–237.Google Scholar
- Myhill, A., & Allen, J. (2002). Rape and sexual assault of women: The extent and nature of the problem. Findings from the British Crime Survey. Home Office Research Study 237. London: Home Office.Google Scholar
- Timmerman, G., & Bajema, C. (1999). Sexual harassment in northwest Europe: A cross-cultural comparison. European Journal of Women’s Studies, 6, 419–439.Google Scholar
- Xu, F., Sternberg, M. R., & Markowitz, L. E. (2010). Men who have sex with men in the United States: Demographic and behavioral characteristics and prevalence of HIV and HSV-2 infection: Results from National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2001–2006. Sexually Transmitted Diseases, 37, 399–405.PubMedGoogle Scholar